Calculation made by BTA Baltic Insurance Company (hereinafter – BTA) show that approximately only 10% of all small size vessels registered in Latvia are insured, which is an alarming indicator, considering the fact that the water transport traffic intensity and thus also the risk level increases each year. Besides, only each fifth water transport driver, when acquiring the CASCO insurance policy of the recreational vessel, has insured his civil liability, as a result of which the majority of casualties, who have suffered in water traffic accidents, may acquire a compensation from the guilty person only through the court.
According to the data of the Road Traffic Safety Directorate (CSDD), the number of small size vessels registered in Latvia increases each year. During the recent year it has increased by 5.3% and reaches almost 23 000 vessels in total. Unfortunately water transport drivers unwillingly insure their vessels and their civil liability that would enable to protect themselves from covering losses to third persons.
“In Latvia water transports do not have MTPL, there is only a voluntary CASCO and owners civil liability insurance available and owners of small vessels unwillingly purchase it. Therefore if an accident is caused by such water transport and it does not have the relevant civil liability insurance, it is practically impossible for the suffering party to receive a compensation for caused damages, unless the casualty and the guilty person agree on that separately or the casualty turns with a statement of claim to the court against the person, who has caused the accident on water. A situation appears, when the guilty person does not bear any liability for the event, but the casualty suffers additional losses. Such a situation is absurdity, because the same accidents like on road may happen also on water - the vessel may run over a person being in water, scratch another water transport, cause damages to the body of the water transport etc.,” tells Iveta Rijniece, of BTA Insurance Claims Handling Department.
When summarizing information regarding small water transport insured by BTA, it shows that the trend of previous years to purchase the CASCO insurance policies only in case, when the leasing companies require that, has changed. In the annual perspective the CASCO insurance of water transport has increased by 41% and the sound majority (93%) of the vessel owners acquire it voluntary, which may be explained by the increase of public understanding on the need of insurance.
“Although the total amount of written ship insurance and civil liability insurance premiums of the owners thereof as well as the number of concluded contracts has increased during the previous year, the total number of insured small size vessels and owners thereof is small, if we look on the fact, how many such vessels are registered in Latvia in total. Approximately 20 thousand euros have been disbursed as indemnities last year, which indicates that accidents with vessels and people on water happen regularly. We can imagine, how many accidents still there are, regarding which were are not aware of, because only approximately 10% of all such vessels are insured,” admits I.Rijniece.
BTA is one of the largest indemnity payers in Baltics. Last year BTA has disbursed an average of 398 thousand euros each business day in insurance indemnities in the Baltic States, which makes it 50 thousand euros every working hour.
AAS BTA Baltic Insurance Company was founded in 2014, after reorganisation of BTA Insurance Company SE, performing successful division of the company according to the geographical distribution of its business operations: Baltics and rest of Europe. BTA Insurance Company SE, being a mother company of AAS BTA Baltic Insurance Company, has been successfully operating on insurance market for more than 20 years, in 2009 becoming the third biggest insurer in Baltic States. The international growth of BTA is proven by the TOP 500 of Central European Companies issued by the international auditor company Deloitte for year 2013, where BTA ranks among 50 largest insurance companies in Central Europe.
In December 2015 AAS BTA Baltic Insurance Company concluded a contract about attraction of an investor – one of the leading insurers in Europe – Vienna Insurance Group AG (VIG). The deal shall be completed after receiving all the necessary permits from the authorities, supervising the operation of the industry, which might take place in the first six months of 2016.
Public Relations Department Director
BTA Baltic Insurance Company AAS
Phone: +371 67025676, mobile: +371 26756841